THE United States government has warned billions of cellphone users about three lies scammers are using to steal money.
Insidious thieves use online dating apps or social networks to trick others into sending them money. However, there are certain things you can look out for to protect your bank account from deletion.
When you meet people on dating apps, after a while they usually want to email you, call you, or text you, and they might even claim it’s true love.
According to the US Federal Trade Commission, romance scammers create fake profiles on dating websites and apps, or contact you through popular social media sites like Instagram or Facebook.
Once the thieves fool someone into believing that they have a romantic interest in them and have gained your trust, they start demanding money.
The scammers may ask for money, stating that they need a plane ticket for your visit, maybe emergency surgery, or something else urgent.
People reported a record $547 million in love scam losses in 2021, about 80 percent more than reports received by the FTC in 2020.
This year, people said they were scammed more often by people asking for gift cards than any other payment method.
Based on stories scammers have told in the past to fulfill their love plans, the US FTC shared three lies to watch out for when talking to a new person online to protect yourself.
1. CANNOT HIT
Someone who tries to scam you will say they can’t meet you in person, the FTC has warned.
They might say they live or travel outside the country.
The scammer may even claim to work on an oil rig, in the military, or with an international organization.
2. Request money
Romance scammers will surely ask you for money at some point in the course of your interactions.
Once they gain your trust, the FTC says they may ask you for help to pay for medical expenses, pay for their visa, or help them pay fees to bail them out.
They might even ask you for money and offer to help you get started investing in cryptocurrencies.
3 PAYMENT METHOD
All scammers want your money fast and in a way that makes it difficult for you to get your money back, the FTC said.
The thieves will ask you to transfer money through a company like Western Union or MoneyGram, or load money onto a gift card.
They do things like this to pressure you to act immediately and pay money but be aware that it is a scam.
Overall, the FTC says that you should never send money or gifts online to someone you like unless you’ve met them in person.
If you believe someone is cheating on you, the US government recommends that you stop communicating with the person immediately.